Ep 40 – Never Enough: The Myth of Productivity as a Measure of Success in a White World

In a capitalistic world where “the hustle” and “the grind” are consistently glorified, productivity is prized as proof of both inherent value and meaningful ambition. In this week’s episode, Amber and Erika discuss the unique ways that we as Black people often feel the pressure to be productive and define ourselves by what we do. Starting with the brutal commodification of chattel slavery, the episode explores how American capitalism has imbued into Black bodies a belief that rest is laziness and that we are only worthy to the extent that we are working. We talk about ways to reject this mindset and rest as resistance. Tune in to hear what we have to say!


  1. Rest as Resistance – Pick one way of rest/relaxation that you’re going to use to fight against the pressure to be productive in 2021. It could be yoga, a quiet walk, etc.
  2. Find an accountability partner and share your plan of rest with them so that they can hold you accountable.
  3. It’s a New Year, so you need to make sure you are rocking with Broke-ish across all of our social media platforms.
    • Twitter – @broke_ish
    • Facebook – Broke-ish
    • Instagram – @brokeishpodcast


The 1619 Project
Author:  Matthew Desmond (The New York Times Magazine)
Date:  Aug 14, 2020

Capitalism needs racism: A response to the NYT 1619 Project
Author:  Joel Wendland-Liu (The People’s Project)
Date:  Jan 9, 2020

The tyranny of the workday: how capitalism colonizes your free time
Author:  Thomas McGath
Aug 27, 2018

Is Capitalism Racist?
Author:  Nicholas Lemann (The New Yorker)
Date:  May 18, 2020

Toxic Productivity: Grappling with “Enough”
Author:  Katy Dimple Manning, LMSW (Houston Therapy)
Date:  Sep 14, 2020

OPINION: ‘Hustle’ culture is unhealthy and toxic
Author:  Raveena Chaudhari (The Red & Black)
Date:  Jan 21, 2019

How the stress of racism can harm your health—and what that has to do with Covid-19
Author:  ALISSA GREENBERG (pbs.org)
Date:  Jul 14, 2020

Exploiting Black Labor After the Abolition of Slavery
Author:  KATHY ROBERTS FORDE and Bryan Bowman (U.S. News & World Report)
Date:  Feb 7, 2017

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